Discipline Priest Healing Mythic+ Tips — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1.5

Last updated on May 12, 2019 at 20:30 by Clandon 48 comments
General Information

In this guide, you will find tips and advice to tackle Mythic+ dungeons with your Discipline Priest in World of Warcraft — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1.5.

1. Discipline Priest in Mythic+

Discipline Priests have received several changes that make the spec more interesting in dungeons. Our damage output, while still providing healing, is second to none. With dungeon design straying away from several one-shot mechanics, Discipline is now better suited to playing in a competitive Mythic+ setting.

1.1. Discipline Priest Mythic+ Rotation

The primary difference between healing in dungeons versus raids is that a single cast of Power Word: Radiance Icon Power Word: Radiance covers the entire group. Due to this, the concept of ramping does not exist as it does for raiding. This allows Discipline to be a much more reactive spec like other healers. We can still benefit greatly from applying shields/damage reductions early, but it is much easier to heal unexpected damage comparatively.

Discipline's healing rotation remains the same for Normal, Heroic, and Mythic dungeons. For more information about the Discipline Priest healing rotation, refer back to the Rotation, Cooldowns, and Abilities page.

1.2. Discipline Priest Utility

Discipline Priests have a unique toolkit that can allow us to heal, while also providing a substantial amount of damage. For Mythic+, added damage is a strong factor when considering any healer and Discipline does not need to sacrifice much healing to contribute damage, making us a very enticing choice for pushing Mythic+ keys. In addition to the damage we provide while healing, we also bring several damage reduction cooldowns, good personal cooldowns, and the ability to dispel enemies.

  • Rapture Icon Rapture, when used, will empower any Power Word: Shield Icon Power Word: Shield casts while you have the buff active. These shields are incredibly potent and can be used pro-actively to prevent large incoming damage or reactively to stabilize a group. It can also help you during periods of high movement.
  • Desperate Prayer Icon Desperate Prayer is a personal cooldown that increases your health by 25% and also heals you for that amount. This cooldown is ideal to use in a pinch and has a relatively short cooldown.
  • Pain Suppression Icon Pain Suppression is a 40% damage reduction cooldown that can, and should, be used pro-actively when possible. It can also be used reactively, specifically if you have the Moment of Repose Icon Moment of Repose Azerite trait. One situation to use this cooldown in would be when you can anticipate damage to prevent your tank from being 1-shot, such as by bosses on Tyrannical.
  • Power Word: Barrier Icon Power Word: Barrier provides you with a great group-wide damage reduction cooldown, provided people stand within it. Use this on high group damage in boss encounters or during trash. Do not be afraid to use this as an extra tank cooldown in situations where it is not needed for the group.
  • Fade Icon Fade can provide a substantial absorb shield, assuming you have the Sanctum Icon Sanctum Azerite trait. This trait can turn your Fade into a personal cooldown, in addition to the threat removal mechanic it provides as baseline.
  • Dispel Magic Icon Dispel Magic allows you to dispel beneficial buffs from enemies. This is extremely useful in Battle for Azeroth dungeons, as a lot of mob packs in many of the dungeons tend to have some kind of buff that they cast on themselves. While this is more important in some dungeons compared to others, it is still very valuable to be able to do it.
  • Purify Icon Purify dispels all Magic and Disease effects from friendly targets.
  • Mass Dispel Icon Mass Dispel remains a really useful ability to have in our arsenal. Dispelling is very important in Battle for Azeroth, and Mass Dispel allows for both offensive and defensive dispels. The fact that you can dispel multiple enemies or friendly targets with just one global is situationally very strong, although Mass Dispel does have a fairly lengthy 45-second cooldown now.
  • Leap of Faith Icon Leap of Faith pulls a friendly party member towards you. It is not that useful generally, but can sometimes save someone.
  • Mind Control Icon Mind Control is good to deal with Bolstering Icon Bolstering if you really do not want a mob in the pack to get Bolstering stacks. While mobs are Mind Controlled, they can not get affected by Bolstering.
  • Psychic Scream Icon Psychic Scream fears up to 5 enemies close to you for 8 seconds, but damage can break this early. Psychic Scream is primarily used as an AoE interrupt in dungeons.
  • Shackle Undead Icon Shackle Undead is not entirely useless in Battle for Azeroth because there are a large amount of Undead mobs in some of the dungeons. You have the option to Crowd Control them as Discipline if needed.
  • Shining Force Icon Shining Force can be rather beneficial to deal with the Necrotic Icon Necrotic and Sanguine Icon Sanguine affixes, due to the requirement of knocking back and slowing enemies. You can find more on these affixes below.

2. Mythic+ Talents for Discipline Priests

Below are the suggested talents for Mythic+. These talents are recommended for all groups and keys at the current time.

Level Choices
15 Castigation Castigation Twist of Fate ? Twist of Fate Schism Schism
30 Body and Soul Body and Soul Masochism ? Masochism Angelic Feather Angelic Feather
45 Shield Discipline Shield Discipline Mindbender Mindbender Power Word: Solace Power Word: Solace
60 Psychic Voice ? Psychic Voice Dominant Mind ? Dominant Mind Shining Force ? Shining Force
75 Sins of the Many Sins of the Many Contrition Contrition Shadow Covenant Shadow Covenant
90 Purge the Wicked Purge the Wicked Divine Star Divine Star Halo Halo
100 Lenience Lenience Luminous Barrier Luminous Barrier Evangelism Evangelism

2.1. Talent Discussion

Level 15 - Schism Icon Schism is currently the best pick in almost all situations and synergizes very well with Power Word: Solace Icon Power Word: Solace and Sins of the Many Icon Sins of the Many. Twist of Fate Icon Twist of Fate is used as a safe talent where your group needs considerably more single target healing or you are not able to get consistent damage out to utilize Atonement Icon Atonement.

Level 30 - Angelic Feather Icon Angelic Feather is the best talent in nearly all situations due to the increased movement speed for both yourself and your allies. Masochism Icon Masochism can see play in very high keys (20+), but is usually not recommended unless you have a very specific reason to take it.

Level 45 - Power Word: Solace Icon Power Word: Solace is the strongest choice, as it deals the most damage, returns the most mana, and with a short cooldown, allows for greater on the move damage/healing.

Level 60 - All three talents on this row have situational uses, however we suggest primarily using Shining Force Icon Shining Force, as it is a reliable option for controlling dangerous enemies.

Level 75 - Sins of the Many Icon Sins of the Many is the strongest option on this row due to adding to our overall damage and Atonement Icon Atonement healing. Shadow Covenant Icon Shadow Covenant is a strong HPS option if you need extra on demand healing outside of Atonement.

Level 90 - All three talents on this row can be viable and will all thrive in different scenarios. The difference between these talents, even at optimal use, is so minor that we recommend giving them all a try. Keep in mind that Halo Icon Halo can pull mobs that you are not currently in combat with, so abuse line of sight or clever positioning to not hit extras. Divine Star Icon Divine Star will result in comparable healing/damage to Purge the Wicked Icon Purge the Wicked, but will require more effort to use correctly. The benefit of Divine Star is that it can be used outside of combat, as well as giving more priority healing compared to Purge the Wicked's healing over time. Purge the Wicked Icon Purge the Wicked is a strong choice on weeks where you can multi-dot heavily. This talent also has heavy synergy with the Azerite trait Death Throes Icon Death Throes.

Level 100 - Lenience Icon Lenience is the strongest choice, as it provides considerable damage reduction throughout the course of a dungeon. The other options it is competing with are also terrible within 5 man content.

3. Mythic+ Affixes

The way Mythic+ affixes are tiered in Battle for Azeroth has changed quite a bit since their launch in Legion.

There are now three weekly affixes and one seasonal affix. The first affix is available instantly at level two and three, the second affix starts at level four, the third affix is enabled at level seven, and finally the seasonal affix is at level ten.

3.1. Tier One Affixes

Fortified Icon Fortified - Non-boss enemies have 20% more health and inflict up to 30% increased damage. Focus on helping provide damage during trash packs and try to learn which packs need your attention more than others. Certain enemies have buffs that need to be dispelled. You can use Mind Control Icon Mind Control for specific enemies to buff your allies. You could even talent into something like Dominant Mind Icon Dominant Mind to control an enemy without sacrificing your ability to heal. The goal with Fortified is to focus on as much crowd control as possible. Having healing cooldowns ready and available for trash packs will prove beneficial.

Tyrannical Icon Tyrannical - Boss enemies have 40% more health and inflict up to 15% increased damage. Discipline AoE is rather limited, but our single target damage is quite high. On most dungeon boss encounters, we will be able to focus heavy damage on the boss, while still healing our group. It is usually recommended to go for a more aggressive build, running Schism Icon Schism, Power Word: Solace Icon Power Word: Solace and Sins of the Many Icon Sins of the Many to maximize your damage and thus your healing. The importance of quickly killing bosses on Tyrannical is high, and Discipline brings quite a few tools to the table to help with that.

3.2. Tier Two Affixes

Bolstering Icon Bolstering - When any non-boss enemy dies, its death cry empowers nearby allies, increasing their maximum health and damage by 20%. This has a 30 yard range. There really is not much you can do to help besides switching targets to help damage higher health enemies. If you get 1-2 highly bolstered enemies, be ready to cast Pain Suppression Icon Pain Suppression or even Rapture Icon Rapture / Power Word: Barrier Icon Power Word: Barrier if it is needed.

Raging Icon Raging - Non-boss enemies enrage at 30% health remaining, dealing 100% increased damage until defeated. Conversely to Bolstering Icon Bolstering, you would want to help damage down specific enemies one at a time to avoid the increased damage done and reduce the healing required on your team. If for some reason the pack is AoE’d down and you have several low health enemies, be ready to use your cooldowns such as Pain Suppression Icon Pain Suppression, Rapture Icon Rapture or Power Word: Barrier Icon Power Word: Barrier to counter the damage.

Sanguine Icon Sanguine - When slain, non-boss enemies leave behind a lingering pool of ichor that heals their allies and damages players. The pools left on the ground have two specific issues that need to be dealt with. Firstly, and the most obvious, is your group members (specifically melee DPS) taking damage after killing an enemy; be ready to spot heal these players up quickly. Secondly, enemies that are casting might stand in these pools, which will heal them. It is highly recommended to talent into Shining Force Icon Shining Force for this affix to ensure that you can knock the enemies back out of the pools and reduce the additional time it takes to kill them.

Teeming Icon Teeming - Additional non-boss enemies are present throughout the dungeon. Extra crowd control might be needed depending on the other affixes (Fortified Icon Fortified makes this much harder to deal with). Depending on the additional enemies that are added, there may be more party-wide damage or single target damage, so be ready to adjust based on the circumstances.

Bursting Icon Bursting - When slain, non-boss enemies explode, causing all players to suffer 14% of their max health in damage over 4 sec (this effect stacks). Bursting Icon Bursting is likely one of the more difficult affixes to handle for a newer Discipline Priest. With a target, Bursting Icon Bursting stacks are rather manageable, however, issues usually arise when healing your party after several enemies have died and you have no more targets. Thankfully, we have several tools to deal with healing out of combat in Battle for Azeroth. Casting Rapture Icon Rapture and covering the party in Power Word: Shield Icon Power Word: Shield will mitigate a large amount of stacks on its own. Power Word: Barrier Icon Power Word: Barrier is also an extremely strong tool in reducing the damage taken to a more manageable level. After you have utilized these two tools, cast Shadow Mend Icon Shadow Mend on targets that are still at risk of dying. In severe situations, Pain Suppression Icon Pain Suppression can be used to ensure you keep a single target alive.

3.3. Tier Three Affixes

Necrotic Icon Necrotic - All enemies' melee attacks apply a stacking blight that inflicts damage over time and reduces healing received. Healing your target after they get somewhere between 10-15 stacks of the debuff becomes nearly impossible. Each stack of the Necrotic Rot debuff accounts for 2% less healing taken. At 10-15 stacks, your healing is reduced by 20-30% and the effectiveness of healing versus working on helping the tank drop stacks swaps. Focus on DPSing to kill the enemy rather than trying to heal the tank. Keep in mind that your absorbs will be limited in effectiveness by this debuff, as well. Pain Suppression Icon Pain Suppression is helpful in preventing a death, since damage reductions are not impacted by this affix. Shining Force Icon Shining Force is extremely helpful in providing a knockback when the tank is attempting to drop the stacks of the debuff. Leap of Faith Icon Leap of Faith is worth considering to pull the tank away from the enemies, helping to drop his stacks. The good news is, Necrotic Rot stacks will drop automatically once you leave combat.

Skittish Icon Skittish - Enemies pay far less attention to threat generated by tanks. Because of threat dropping from the tank, it is important that you maintain a focus on specifically healing melee DPS in your group. Maintaining Atonement Icon Atonement on both your tank and the 1 or 2 melee DPS in the group is advised so that you can quickly provide increased spot healing (since Mastery: Grace Icon Mastery: Grace buffs your healing on targets with Atonement Icon Atonement). Fade Icon Fade can be a powerful tool for this affix due to healer aggro potentially being a factor.

Volcanic Icon Volcanic - While in combat, enemies periodically cause gouts of flame to erupt beneath the feet of distant players. This affix is fairly easy to avoid as a Discipline Priest, due to our ability to heal on the move. The issue you will run into here is when other players are getting hit frequently by the ability. Make sure to be ready to top off those who get hit quickly to avoid extra deaths.

Explosive Icon Explosive - While in combat, enemies periodically summon Explosive Orbs that will detonate if not destroyed. We can actually help quite a bit with this affix, given our ability to provide damage. If you are running Power Word: Solace Icon Power Word: Solace, you can help kill the orb quickly with an instant cast ability. It is recommended to keep an eye out for these orbs and break away from healing to help destroy them, if it is needed.

Quaking Icon Quaking - Periodically, all players emit a shockwave, inflicting damage and interrupting nearby allies. This affix can be somewhat annoying due to the spread requirement and interrupt on your casts. Be sure to not be casting when this ability finishes to avoid being spell locked. If players are stacked when this goes off, you may have to follow up with some quick healing to top off the group.

Grievous Icon Grievous - When injured below 90% health, players will suffer increasing damage over time until healed above 90% health. Grievous is definitely one of, if not the hardest affix for any healer, Discipline Priest being no exception. The lack of an out of combat burst heal can make topping players off who have high stacks of this debuff rather difficult, especially in higher keys, where damage during combat is higher. Similar to the issues with Bursting, when we exit combat and no longer have targets to attack, it is much harder for us to top everyone off. The best method to handle this affix is to focus on keeping people topped off in combat by keeping up as many Atonement Icon Atonements as possible, while still dealing damage. Doing this will prevent you from being in too big of a hole when you exit combat and allow you to top people off. If you get in a situation where you have multiple people with high stacks of Grievous and are struggling to top them off, be sure to use Rapture Icon Rapture and Power Word: Barrier Icon Power Word: Barrier to mitigate some of the damage and help you recover. Talenting into Shadow Covenant Icon Shadow Covenant may also seem to be worth considering, however, you will sacrifice damage in the process of doing so (by not being talented into Sins of the Many Icon Sins of the Many). Groups with strong offheals can provide a significant benefit during Grievous weeks. Fish feasts, if you can afford them, are also a method of quickly topping off the party out of combat and is much more time efficent than attempting to spam Shadow Mend Icon Shadow Mend.

3.4. Seasonal Affix

Reaping Icon Reaping is the seasonal affix for Patch 8.1 in Battle for Azeroth. Every 20% on the Enemy forces bar, Bwonsamdi will resurrect spirits of all the trash creatures you had killed up to that point and they will charge at you no matter where you are at. This happens a total of 5 times per dungeon. You will be in full control of when this occurs, so planning/adjusting your pulls will be crucial.

3.4.1. Notable Abilities

  • Reap Soul — Stacking DoT that deals 2% maximum health per stack. This should be dispelled when it gets to high stacks. It should generally only be on the tank, but if other group members manage to get stacks, do not be afraid to utilize Mass Dispel Icon Mass Dispel.
  • Grave Bolt — A long cast that can be interrupted. Deals 25% of the target's max health. Be prepared to spot heal players that get hit by this, especially when multiple casts hit the same target at once.
  • Shadow Smash — A ground targeted ability which is displayed with a large purple circle. Do not stand in this. Anyone struck by this will take near lethal damage and have their maximum health reduced by 20% for 1 minute.
  • Expel Soul — Appears in large batches when a Lost Soul dies. These should be dodged as much as possible. Any player struck by one takes damage, is knocked back, and receives a DoT that reduces their damage and healing by 10% per stack for 30 seconds.

4. Changelog

  • 12 May 2019: Updated page after peer review.
  • 16 Apr. 2019: This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 04 Mar. 2019: Fixed various issues and removed outdated information.
  • 10 Dec. 2018: Updated page for Patch 8.1.
  • 11 Sep. 2018: Made several updates based on post-launch experience as well as updated Azerite trait recommendations.
  • 11 Aug. 2018: Added page.
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